Last updated on September 21st, 2023.
If you are looking for a career that is the perfect blend of creativity and science, you may be interested in becoming a dental technician. You may be wondering what dentistry has got to do with creativity. Or better yet, what does a dental technician do, and what are the benefits of choosing it as a career?
Dental technicians collaborate with dentists to help correct any issues with a person’s teeth. They do not perform the traditional duties of a dentist, such as cleanings and fillings. Instead, dental technicians focus on creating and manufacturing restorative devices to repair and replace natural teeth.
Becoming a dental technician is an excellent career path for anyone who wants to combine medicine, technology, and creativity. Many individuals are unaware of what an interesting and gratifying profession it can be. Keep reading for the top five reasons why being a dental technician is a good career choice.
Is A Dental Technician a Good Career?
Generally speaking, a career as a dental technician is a great career to get into. But is it the right path for you?
Becoming a dental technician is great for anyone who is both creative and business and technology savvy. Few jobs can provide the security, flexibility, and excellent pay that a dental technician can while also catering to creative skills.
The job of a dental technician boils down to developing and producing corrective devices for natural teeth. A dental technician manufactures dental appliances including crowns, dentures, and implants. They are also responsible for whitening, contouring, bonding, dental bridges, veneers, and gum lifts.
For a dental technician to be successful in their field, they must have particular talents and skills that allow them to create applications that appear natural.
Ideal skills include:
- Attention to detail
- Excellent hand-eye coordination
- Color perception
- Time management skills
- Manual Dexterity
- Interest in emerging sciences and technologies
Communication and organization are also important since dental technicians are in frequent contact with dental clinics to obtain patient data on which to base their work.
Career Outlook for Dental Technicians
With the field of dentistry already experiencing shortages, there is no doubt that there will be a significant demand for dental technicians, currently, and in the coming years.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), demand for dental technicians will rise as the American population ages and aesthetic prosthesis like as veneers and crowns become more affordable.
Damage and loss of teeth can be caused by aging, accidents, sickness, and poor oral health. Today’s preventative dental treatment, on the other hand, allows individuals to preserve their own teeth, apply aesthetic modifications, and replace missing teeth with partial dentures. As a result, the BLS predicts that the overall employment of dental technicians will expand at a rate of 12% from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all professions.
5 Benefits of Choosing a Career as A Dental Technician
Dental technicians are essential members of any dental clinic or lab. For example, as a dental lab technician, you’ll fill dentist orders for a variety of dental appliances and work with advanced technology and materials to manufacture tooth replacements that are authentic, aesthetically beautiful, and practical.
Working as a dental technician is a gratifying and lucrative profession, but it’s also so much more than that. Here are five benefits of becoming a dental technician as a career.
Creative Work Environment
Working in a lab doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be stuck in a stuffy, sterile environment. Many of the tools and materials in a dental lab could also be seen in an art studio.
Every single dental component must be meticulously collected, carved, and sculpted using tools like brushes, polishing wheels, electric drills, lathes, presses, and furnaces. As technology has gotten more engaged with dentistry, you will also encounter computers with design software.
You’ll also put skills like color perception and hand dexterity to the test as you build and repair fake teeth, work on artificial tooth replacement, and create custom bridges and crowns.
Quick Entry to the Workforce
Employers seeking dental technicians often prefer someone with some hands-on experience. Many employers provide on-the-job training for dental technicians, but most technicians receive their education from dental laboratory programs certified by the ADA.
The majority of dental technician education programs last roughly two years. Community colleges, technical colleges, vocational institutions, universities, and dentistry schools all provide programs.
However, being a successful dental lab technician does not necessarily require an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. Actually, with a dental laboratory technology certificate, it is possible to begin your career after graduating from high school. Certificate programs are not deemed academic since they do not include general education courses, but if they provide the hands-on education needed to get the job done.
You Get to Work Behind the Scenes
If working one-on-one with people really isn’t your thing, then you’re in luck. As a dental technician, not much patient interaction is required. Instead, dental technicians typically work behind the scenes, manufacturing customized dental implants such as dentures, crowns, custom mouth guards, and orthodontic appliances using the dentist’s measurements and data.
The vast majority of dental technicians work for small private businesses or commercial dentistry laboratories. The lab might include as few as a few personnel or as many as 100 technicians. Dental technicians are also employed by the military, hospitals, suppliers, and manufacturers.
You Get to Help People
Those who choose to work in healthcare will not dispute the impact they will have on their patients’ lives, even if they are not dealing with them face-to-face.
Dental pain is often regarded as traumatic and debilitating. As a dental technician, you get to help people overcome discomfort, eat the foods they like, and feel more confident about themselves.
Demand for Dental Technicians Is on the Rise
The need for dental technicians is rapidly increasing. As mentioned earlier, dental technician employment is expected to expand 12 percent from 2020 to 2030. In fact, each year around 11,000 vacancies for dental laboratory technologists are expected, with many of those opportunities expected to stem from the need to replace individuals who switch to other occupations or leave the labor market.
As you have seen, there are several benefits to working as a dental technician. You would be picking a rich profession that challenges your creativity and motivates you to improve with a job outlook that has a far quicker growth rate than many occupations today.
While being a dental lab technician requires effort and determination, those who choose to give it their all get significant benefits in terms of career stability and fulfillment.